Monday, 7 May 2018

Shayne Ward interview: Aidan's final scenes air tonight


How did it feel to film your exit scenes?
As an actor I was honoured to be given the responsibility of this storyline, what actor would give up that opportunity. It was a decision that was made between us all and was totally storyline led, they sat me down and said they were thinking of exploring this issue and I understood the importance of it. At the end of the day I could have said no, that I couldn't do it. But I thought about it and talked it through and there was a greater pull to want to do the storyline. I will miss playing Aidan and working with the fantastic people on this show but it is a massively important storyline to tell.

What research did you do?
I met with Samaritans and I was able to talk through everything, they were across all the storylines as were CALM. It helped answer a lot of questions, I learned lots of things from them and realise that every story is different. This is Aidan's story, it is not based on anyone else's story but it is telling an all too common story. They encouraged me to ask anything. Knowing that they were advising on the scripts gave me great confidence to play the story out. I know Aidan, I have played him for three years, I was able to have some input into the final episodes following my meeting with Samaritans as I wanted to be true to Aidan.

How did you find playing the scenes?
It was difficult playing those scenes because I know how important it is to tell a story like this, it has to ring true for the viewer. There needed to be honesty in it so I had to really look into everything that Aidan has been through. Obviously you do draw upon stories that you have been told but I had to take everything into account and try in some way to understand everything Aidan has been through and what has brought him to this point.

I had quite a few emotional scenes and it is important to be able to get out of that mindset and shake it off at the end of the filming day. I have always been able to deal with a lot of pressure, it helps being from such a big family, this going back to my singing days. I was 21 when I did The X Factor, I had been working from the age of 16, so when The X Factor came along I was more prepared for the pressure that brought. I am one of seven and I always felt like one of the older ones. I was the one they took advice from. So when I did this storyline and came out of it I was able to step away from the pressure.

You can do a scene like the ones I played and you can remain in that day place and I could have stayed feeling very down and knowing how serious the storyline was, I could have added pressure on myself but I believed in what I was doing and hopefully it will be so helpful to people that it will be something that my daughter will be proud of. So for me it was all about looking to the future with her at the forefront of my mind. She is my happy place.

Are you good at talking about your feelings?
Trying to find the right balance with Aidan I brought a lot of myself into playing him so I could give true performances but there is also a lot about him that is very different from me. I am a talker, I believe in talking. It is something I try to instil in my friends and family if they are going through hard times. I ask them to talk to me about it, or to each other. If you are left alone with your thoughts and demons it puts you in that dark place and it is hard to get out. That is what this storyline is about, a lot of men think it is a weakness to talk and it isn't. It is a pride thing, men bottle it up - but have pride in talking and admitting how you are feeling. I have sat there with my own thoughts and it doesn't work, talking about them is what helped me but sadly Aidan doesn't, he doesn't want to burden anyone, he is too proud to speak out.

Will you watch tonight?
Yes, and my family have said that they want to watch it, and that is the point, if they didn't want to watch they would be falling into the bracket of ignoring the issue and staying silent so I am very pleased that they want to watch it. Hopefully it will spark conversations amongst viewers, they might be difficult conversations but they are important ones.


If Aidan's storyline is resonating with you, there is help and support available now. Samaritans offers a 24 hours a day, 7 days a week helpline support service. Call them FREE on 116 123. You can also email jo@samaritans.org. Further information can be found at www.mentalhealth.org.uk.





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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Shayne deserves an award, he was excellent.

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